Friday, September 12, 2008

Comic 475: Oh, we've got "difficulties" alright...

WHAT THE FUCK
Further Boomerang Difficulties
good god is this a shitty comic or what. It renders me nearly paralyzed with anger. These is just so much to hate here. I mean, people are resorting to, as they did last time, rearranging these panels to make them funnier. That is not a good sign, in my view.

I will try to proceed as calmly as I can. but it will be hard. CHRIST THIS IS STUPID.

In the first four panels, a man throws a boomerang AND THAT'S IT, GANG, nothing else happens. NOTHING HAPPENS. This is even worse than guy sits on a bench, because that had a sound effect at least, and worse than two guys in hats see each other because, I dunno, that at least had some mysterious lines and like there was a guy wearing two hats, which as you know is always Komedy Gold!

In the second set of panels, a man throws a boomerang and then a voice cries out "OMG TEH OZONE LAYAR" or something. I guess the idea is...he pierced the ozone layer? He...destroyed the ragged remains of the ozone layer? What, exactly happened here? OH WAIT I KNOW WHAT HAPPENED randall munroe realized that he needed to prove to himself that he knew all about SCIENCE so he threw in some shit he learned about in Ecology 102: Our Precious Atmosphere and figured eh, that's good enough for now! I've got sycophants ready to praise my genius so need for reason or logic, those two pesky idiots! After all, no one likes realistic humor! PEOPLE WANT THE MOST INSANE THING which they can never relate to because that will make them have a HEARTY CHUCKLE and Komedy Gold!.

let us move to the third line of this most brilliant of comics

Golly gee here he throws a banana instead of a boomerang! It is unexpected and thus it = Komedy Gold! Also, there is a girl because Randall Understands Girls i'm sorry he understands Women and knows how they act when their bananas are misused. This particular woman was apparently very fond of that banana, because she is speaking about it as though she were on some deserted island and it was her only food. Normal people, of course, don't care that much about their precious last banana. So the dude threw a banana look it has a thick peel you can go pick it up at eat it it's not a big deal. what the hell, lady

But oh man the real Komedy Gold comes in the last row!

Here, the man throws a boomerang and he literally breaks the wall of the comic and goes flying out! oh my goodness this is so funny I was on the floor crying within seconds of realizing the hilarious enormity of what randall was doing here. He was in space! And then he broke through the wall of his space capsule! I am laughing again now, just thinking about it. The character literally broke through the boundries of the format he was in! This is totally new. This has never been seen here before. Nothing like it AT ALL.

And the thing is this. For all the intense, diarhettic shittiness we see here, I might be ok with it. I might just say, "ok, he tried and failed to do something different. He got desperate, and he tried this, and he failed, and that's really not new." Except for this one fact - this comic is meant as a follow up to another shitty comic. That was a quagmire of random drawings with no plot, no logic and, obviously, nothing even mildly resembling a joke. I hated the concept then and I hate it now. What is the point? "Ha ha, those boomerangs are so crazy! so crazy you just DO NOT KNOW EVER what will happen with them! Maybe you'll get a flying shark! maybe you will turn out to be in space! Who the hell knows, with those crazy boomerangs! I can't even express it in one comic, all the possibilties! I thought I could, but then I thought of some more and had to draw another comic! ha ha ha I should probably just register www.boomerangdifficulties.com so I can make my full time job listing these HILARIOUS things! oh my goodness my favorite was the one where it turns out he's in space!

Oh goodness, look at the time! I'm late for my appointment to masturbate while looking in a mirror!"

57 comments:

  1. Notably, this comic plays heavily with the principle of Cartoon Confusion, i.e, blurring the line between the drawing and the physical reality represented by the drawing.

    #3 is used to mock xkcd's abstract, spare drawing style, as the representation of a boomerang and a banana are the same two curved lines. Thrower in #3 may or may not be aware that he has a banana. [James Lipton] How existential. [/]

    #4 confuses the representation of a room with the physical extents of the comic. It gets us to a nice little visual of stick-figure-explosive-decompression.

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  2. Right-right-right-down-left-left-left-down-down-right-up-right-right-bottom was pretty funny. As I recall it actually had a plot.

    Carl, I'm with you on your frustration with lack of humor of this comic. But honestly, I'm a little disappointed with your mock comic too. I humbly offer my own mock-up for your enjoyment.

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  3. I love this writeup. I'm trying to find a way to word this without sounding so much like a sycophant, but yeah. I laughed very hard.

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  4. I was giddy when I saw that comic because I knew this post was coming. I am not disappointed. Best post you've written yet.

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  5. Dude, it's pretty clear that you and Munroe have divergent senses of humor and irony. What exactly are you hoping to change with this blog of yours?

    Posted anonymously because I'm a sissy.

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  6. But the thing is, it's not like he's playing to an empty audience. There are plenty of people who think xkcd's taken a downturn lately. People who liked the earlier strips - more importantly.

    Either Randall's sense of humor has changed in the past few months, and we at this blog are just the select group of people who don't "get it" - or his sense of humor's the same and his jokes are just shittier. Myself, I think it's the latter.

    I obviously don't speak for Carl, but I doubt he actually thinks he's going to change anything with this blog. He just wants to get his opinion out there, and maybe entertain people while he does. Same reason people write reviews of anything, really.

    It's 3 AM. Am I making sense?

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  7. This is essentially just another form of entertainment. There doesn't have to be a point.

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  8. I added a couple lines to my mock up to make it better.

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  9. Anonymous, I could snap a picture of my dick and call it a hilarious comic. No one would find that funny... why? Because it's low quality work.

    Not all opinions are equal. Just because some people are mindfuckingly stupid and enjoy having two retarded boomerang jokes with no variety doesn't mean they're good comics.

    Randall's material is clearly uninspired and dull. The reason this blog exists is because, for whatever reason, there remains a large group of people who love nothing more to jizz all over Randall every time he posts something. That pisses a lot of people off. This is one of the few places that those of us who go "why are they laughing? the comic is shit" can converge and collectively facepalm.jpg.

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  10. I am not a big fan of Cyanide and Happiness, but I feel I should point out they use the 'frames of the comic functioning as physical barriers in some form' joke a lot.

    God this was a terrible comic.

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  11. Pat - of course it makes you wonder: How did the little man get into space? Why did he not notice? and if the room ended at the end of the drawing, why the hell did he hurl a boomerang at the wall like that? Nitpicky questions, but they get at how the logic isn't really there and why I think many readers would just stare at the comic and go "huh?"

    Andy - Your reconfiguring of the panels may be funny given what you had to work with, but that doesn't mean to much. In any case, Randall's comic clearly still sucks and your mocking of it is very nice (I still like mine too though....whatever)

    Jay, as long as you never become like the forum idiots at xkcd you can say whatever you want.

    Connor - thanks. I feed on compliments, as you probably know.

    Anon- see, Randall and I used to have the same sense of humor and clearly one of us has diverged since then. I say it's him. What I am hoping to change is to create a little place online for people who also think xkcd is sucking hard, tell people they don't have pretend to love xkcd, and of course, eventually turn enough people against xkcd that he has to either make better comics or stop making comics at all.

    And more importantly, I want to have fun and continue to analyze humor, which has always been a hobby of mine.

    Jay, again - yeah I don't expect to actually accomplish all of what I wrote. But you have to shoot for something. You are making a lot of sense.

    Connor mentions an important point. If no one read xkcd, this blog wouldn't exist. It's only because so many people fawn all over it that is pisses me off (in general, if I dislike something, then the more other people like it the more I will grow to hate it. I'M LOOKING AT YOU, DANE COOK!) There's a reason that while the url of this blog is xkcdsucks but the title at the top is xkcd:overrated.

    Rob - I should probably start thinking about writing a word or two about cyanide and happiness. It is an interesting comic, and not usually for good reasons.

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  12. I have to disagree with you all on this one. While the first boomerang comic was lame this one is the best xkcd comic since that cube bra (yes, that one was great as well).

    The first row is minimalistic humor at it's best. That row alone would have made a great comic as well. After reading the first boomerang comic you know the premise: The boomerang guy throws his boomerang and something bad happens. After all absurd bad things that happened in the first boomerang comic, it's fun to see how the most realistic result of a boomerang throw still makes him as sad as any boomerang thrower, whose boomerang doesn't return, should be. It made me chuckle.

    The second row is not really funny. It's a filler row that makes the comedy timing better and it makes the comic look more like the previous boomerang comic in format. The second row also signals that you still can expect absurd things to happen in this comic, not only realistic.

    The third row delivers a new unsuspected twist. You can see that the thing he throws is a banana, when you know that you should look for it. I appreciate this use of Cartoon Confusion, I suppose.

    The fourth row felt a bit old. "That way of using the frame I've seen before", I thought. "Well the comic is still quite good, but nothing extra." Then I realised that the comic didn't end, I just had to scroll down. That last frame was completly unexpected and twisted what felt like an uninspired reuse of an old classic joke into something new and fresh. Brilliant and absurd enough to make me laugh loudly for quite a while. (I guess the size of my Firefox window is one of the reason why I like this comic so much, It wouldn't have been all that fun if I've seen the last frame before I've read all four rows.)

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  13. And I have to disagree with you in turn. SURPRISE.

    The first row isn't "minimalist" humor, it's a lack of humor. You might think it's "fun" to see how throwing a boomerang and having it not return makes him sad, I think that's about as much "fun" as dropping an anvil on my toes.

    In the second row, I'm glad we agree it's not funny. But I'm not sure why you need a "signal" that the comic will be absurd. Without it, would you really have read the last panel and gone "oh well that was OK, too bad I had no idea it would turn out absurd. If only I had had a signal..."

    Third row still doesn't strike me as funny. Just because Randall draws things with basically no detail doesn't make it funny when it's confusing. And once you know it's a banana, you have the question, "why the hell was he throwing a banana, and why did that girl care so much?"

    I guess on the fourth row I just have to disagree. Why is he in space? None of it makes sense. I doubt we'll progress anywhere if we continue this debate, it sounds like we both just come to very different conclusions about this comic.

    I appreciate the differing opinion, though. Thank you.

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  14. The woman is a subtle nod to this blog, saying what we were all thinking, whether the banana's funny or not.

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  15. Just wanted to say I am so, so, so glad this blog exists. So much mediocrity on the Internet is not only lambasted but raised to great heights of overratedness. I don't care how cute you are, Randall--you still suck. No wonder all these girls keep breaking up with him.

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  16. Holy Christ this was a funny post! Like Christy above, I'm so pleased I found this blog.

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  17. And I am glad you enjoy it. You are encouraged to comment often.

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  18. And I am glad you enjoy it. You are encouraged to comment often.

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  19. I was going through your archives again and just noticed the secret comic. I had enjoyed parts of the original before, I admit, but your version shows how truly lacking it was before you typed all over it.

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  20. I read the girl as having caught the boomerang guy throwing bananas before, or otherwise behaving in ridiculous ways BEFORE this comic. From her dialogue, it sounds like he does stuff like this and she is starting to get fed up. It's not funny when he does things like this anymore. See?

    (Also, repetition can make things funnier, and with a sequel boomerang comic, I think that's part of what Randall wants. It works better in person, though, because you can react to your audience. Similar to "explain the joke" jokes, it works best when you catch the right feeling from your audience.)

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  21. I take it, Carl, you do not modernism (in art).

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  22. you do not LIKE modernism*

    :P

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  23. it's all about context. xkcd is not the place for it, at least it hasn't been in the past. If he's transitioning to it, ok, he can change the tone of his comic to post-modernism, but as just it's own little fucked-up oasis here, I say it is out of place and not funny.

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  24. omfg I had never noticed your hidden comic

    THANK YOU Anon for posting here so I would return

    Carl I gotta say the phrase "tra la la" is just the funniest thing

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  25. Fourth wall humor anyone?

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  26. Look, as funny as your posts are...

    you miss the point of xkcd.

    It wasn't meant to be ":hahahhahaha lol" funny.

    It just is.
    Take it as it comes.

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  27. Anon: Can it at least be "Ha, it doesn't suck" funny? I'm not even sure why I read the comic anymore, besides inertia, and being too lazy to remove it from my RSS feeds. The days where it's not funny are precious seconds I could be using to find more, better funny.

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  28. I don't get the joke. I still think you are a loser, Carl. Get a life, besides roasting a poor guy trying to make a buck off of web comics. Really, Randall is making a lot more money off of what he is doing than you are. I guess economically speaking, that makes him smarter than you! And he is a lot nicer than you about doing his crap. :-)

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  29. holy crap i never thought of it that way

    but the question is: how much money am I trying to make?

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  30. Dunno. But with what your doing now, I'm guessing not much.

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  31. Fun fact: not every blog or website is intended or even expected to make money, or occupies the bulk of the creator's free time! For an example of this, see xkcdsucks.blogspot.com

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  32. Oh really? I can see the ads now: "with the all-new blog-o-sphere technology, you can create your own piece-o-shit webpage for free! And it won't even be time consuming! Then you can use it to criticize the work of other folks that actually have to spend there time making money so that they can LOSE profits! There is no better way to spend your free time..."

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  33. Yeah, and those movie critic assholes, that give movies bad reviews? What the fuck is up with them, huh? They spent millions of dollars and months of their time making that movie and now some dick is out there saying the acting is weak, or the plot is unbelievable, or the characterization is two-dimensional? What the fuck is their problem, man? Why don't they have lives? Why don't they just make good movies their own instead of providing a valuable service to consumers of film, or an interesting forum for fans and haters to discuss the films they're reviewing? What the FUCK man?

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  34. Calm down! There 'aint any reason to get all freaked up and locked up and talking to yourself. The difference between Randall's work and movies is, consumers have to pay to see movies. And so, if the movie isn't good, the consumers who see the movie are getting ripped off. Randall's work, however, is free for anyone to view without charge. It's sole purpose on his site is to generate traffic so that he can sell stuff (see http://store.xkcd.com/ ) Now, people who like Randall's stuff can buy all the teeshirts and crap they want from him, and they get what they wanted - so they are not ripped off. And the one's who don't like there stuff can just take their business elsewhere. Again, no one is ripped off. And Randall made most of the money he has using this process. And you are a loser, 'cause you spend your free time essentially attacking his business for no apparent reason so that he can lose profit.

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  35. We are attacking his business because it is a shitty business, and he is offering a shitty product, and we don't believe he should be getting the business that he does. If he goes broke because of it then he should have made a better product. Capitalism!

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  36. oh god i hate you retards. so yeah, the space theme has been used a lot of times before, does that mean it's not funny? it's not like he said "today's comic is a brand new idea" at the beginning of the comic. stop making it look like randall completely failed at something he wasn't aiming for in the first place.

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  37. I don't think I said the problem was that "space" has been used before. I didn't say that at all. I said that breaking the 4th wall has been used before, but that is not the same as outer space. Not at all. Try harder, and I will respond again.

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  38. Isn't every rant you make just reused stuff? :/

    Here is basically how I see your comic rants:

    The heads aren't attached!

    Randall needs to prove he knows about women/science!

    Over exaggerate small jokes to the point they're not funny!

    Nobody speaks like that!

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  39. One works with what one is given. We are given basically the same errors, over and over and over again.

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  40. Thank you rob. The problem with your analogy is that Randall's goal, so to speak, is "make a funny comic." He has zero other limitations. If he can only come back to the same few tropes for humor, that's dumb. My goal, on the other hand, is "criticize xkcd" which is far narrower. I can only work with, as Rob says, what Randall gives me. And he tends to do the same dumb things all the time.

    but "the heads aren't attached" is something I usually don't say, though, only very occasionally.

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  41. It's a comic about Einstein's thought experiment of general relativity. How did no one here get this?

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  42. The thought experiment is the idea that if an astronaut were on a spaceship constantly accelerating upward, creating a force equal in magnitude and direction of gravity, said astronaut would not be able to tell if he/she is on Earth or not; of course as long as there are no windows. The guy continually tries to throw the boomerang as if he were on Earth, but either the confinement of the ship or his lack of ability hinder it. The girl on the other hand, represents an observer aware of the movement. She notes the ozone layer, and complains about their loss of food, which doesn't phase the guy since he still believes that he could in fact be on Earth. The second to last panel is the a-ha moment when he discovers that they are in fact on a spaceship, and subsequently is sucked out into space. I'm not saying it's funny, but it's not completely baseless.

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  43. i think that is a huge stretch.

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  44. "She notes the ozone layer." That is not what she does there.

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  45. She says, "oh god, the ozone layer." What else would she be doing that would make sense within the comic?

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  46. She says "Oh god, the ozone layer!" The exclamation point is important. Even if it were not there, saying "oh god" means it is an exclamation. Fully articulated, the sentence would be something like:

    "Oh god, your thrown projectile has destroyed the ozone layer!"

    Other examples: "oh God, the plates!" "oh God, my mother's urn!" "oh God, my ability to experience joy EVER AGAIN having viewed xkcd!"

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  47. when you come up with a better reasoned explanation for the comic I will withdraw mine...

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  48. It's supposed to be random and crazy! because it's so RANDOM! just like the first boomerang comic. or that one where the couple is in the hot air balloon and then are attacked by red spiders. so random and crazy!

    you can read more into it if you try (as you did) but I think that's not what he had in mind.

    Why would the girl yell "oh god! the ozone layer!" if she knew they were traveling upward shouldn't she have expected that at some point they would run into it?

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  49. Hey, so I'm quite late on this one. Some of your posts are legitimate, and amusing, criticisms. Some are either pathetic or intentionally fail to interpret the comic correctly. This one was going for sheer absurdity and non-sequitors, a brand of humor that falls squarely into the category of subjectivity.

    Yes, I'm posting this on a few of your more pathetic posts. Like Mr. Munroe, you seem to need a little help with editing, choosing the good from the bad.

    Hello.

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  50. Man, this site has a lot of personal attacks on Randal. I understand criticizing his work, but insulting him for it just seems unneccesary. Though I do know that I am in the minority as far as things like that go.

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  51. sometimes it is hard to keep our rage at his comics from spilling over into rage at him directly. Writing in a more level-headed state, I can say that I think Randall would be a perfectly fine guy if he just stopped writing his comic (or made it not suck). Just start the pictoblog, randall....

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  52. absurdities and non-sequitors are not funny.

    pillow.

    was that funny? Of course not. What's the difference between that and this comic? Very little.

    I am always open to criticism. What didn't you like about this post? did you think I just missed the point of the comic?

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  53. Hello All,

    1) The ozone layer? Liek OMFG! How did he do that? What's randall trying to say? That he knows about scyeence?
    >Actually, no. The joke there, and this seems to be a type of joke that passes through the critic's humor filters, is that it is ABSURD. Why would the ozone layer be affected by a boomerang? Because he has REALLY bad luck!
    2) Space? More absurd! The comic leading to this one is entitled "I am not good with boomerangs." ie, every time I throw a boomerang, it doesn't just fail to return: something terrible happens!

    Seriously, stop insulting Randall personally. Straw-man attacks are fun to write, but ultimately you too will rely on your own sycophants to inflate your ego within your small community.

    Cheers,
    Sam Patch

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  54. nobody here likes carl dude

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  55. it's true, even the people who think xkcd sucks think my reasons are terrible and that they could all do a better job.

    anyway, even if people didn't hate me, and even if I did end up relying on sycophants etc, that still doesn't make it ok for xkcd to do the same thing. If I started to act like that I'd hope that most of my readers would leave and get together someplace and mock me.

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